Shawn Greenlee, Faculty Lead
Shawn Greenlee is a composer, sound artist, and Professor at Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) where he leads the Studio for Research in Sound & Technology (SRST).  His recent work explores spatial audio, high density loudspeaker arrays, and erratic sound synthesis techniques.

Greenlee has been active as a solo electronic / electroacoustic improvisor since 1997 and has toured extensively across the US and Europe. Conference and festival performances include New Interfaces for Musical Expression (2018 Blacksburg, 2015 Baton Rouge, 2014 London, 2013 Daejeon), International Computer Music Conference (2021 Santiago, 2018 Daegu, 2011 Huddersfield, 2005 Barcelona), BEAST FEaST (2017 Birmingham), PdCon16 (2016 New York), Cube Fest (2019, 2016 Blacksburg), Re-new (2013 Copenhagen), IN TRANSIT (2008 Berlin), and Elevate (2007 Graz), among others.

Greenlee’s solo and group discography spans over fifty releases. Greenlee is a founding member of Landed, active since 1997 and known for its deconstructed rock, rhythmic noise, and intense live performances. From 1999-2001, he performed with Six Finger Satellite.

Greenlee holds a Ph.D. in Computer Music and New Media from Brown University.

Alex Chechile, Research Fellow
Alex Chechile is a sound artist, composer, and electronic artist whose work develops in parallel with research in neuroscience, psychoacoustics, and the biomechanics of hearing.  With a particular interest in the relationship between sound and the body, his immersive compositions, installations, and performances aim to bring transparency to otherwise invisible processes in biological and technological systems.

Questions that arise in his artistic work lead to formalized studies, and the results cyclically inform his sonic practice. Chechile is a leading researcher on the psychoacoustic study and creative application of difference tones, which are sounds that are generated in the inner ear and are perceived as localized within the head.  His work exhibits how difference tones expand layers of sonic material to include sounds outside the acoustic space, as well as how they create an additional nested layer of spatial depth between loudspeakers and ears.  Moving beyond the established two-tone difference tone paradigm, Chechile’s behavioral research shows up to seven additional types of difference tones are reliably perceived from multi-tone acoustic stimuli.  In his series of pieces On the Sensations of Tone (2010— ), Chechile explores the physicality of sound and spatial depth using difference tones, and his Ear Tone Toolbox is the first widely available collection of software and modular instruments for evoking the phenomenon.


Michael Demps, Affiliated Researcher
Michael Demps’ practice is fueled by a fascination with the nature of being—being in one’s body and more specifically, the social structures that confine the body’s ability to move through the world. It is important to understand that such experiences are different in different bodies in order to develop more empathetic relationships with one another, and celebrate more complex and nuanced ways of being. As an artist, Demps is dedicated to exploring notions of the Black interior through making. This interest permeates his collaborative and non-collaborative projects. During the past year he has had the opportunity to exhibit work that contends with the mapping of an interior interconnectivity to the collective through the personal and through somatic activation. His work ranges from abstract monoprint image generation and ghost printing to creating objects that serve as spiritual markings put forth to hold space for self-discovery, recovery and recuperation. These generative systems of making through recontextualization, improvisation and repetition serve as grounding values of his practice and exist in a fugitive space against authorship as a gatekeeper of racism and capitalism. The current cultural shift due to the pandemic has left Demps searching for ways to move his practice forward and engage with audiences in new ways.

Mark Cetilia, Affiliated Researcher
Mark Cetilia is an interdisciplinary artist whose practice exists at the nexus of analog and digital technologies. Exploring the possibilities of generative systems, Cetilia’s work is an exercise in carefully controlled chaos. Over the past two decades, he has worked to develop idiomatic performance systems utilizing custom hardware and software, manifesting in a rich tapestry of sound and image.

He is a member of the media art group Redux, recipients of a Creative Capital grant in Emerging Fields, and the electroacoustic ensemble Mem1, described by The Grove Dictionary of American Music as “a complex cybernetic entity” whose “evolving, custom-built systems are as important an aspect of the duo’s achievements as their ever-innovative sound.”

Cetilia’s work has been screened / installed at the ICA (London), Oboro (Montréal), O’ (Milan), MoBY (Bat Yam), SoundWalk (Long Beach), and R.K. Projects (Providence). He has performed widely at such venues as Kunstraum Walcheturm (Zurich), the Borealis Festival (Bergen), Café OTO (London), STEIM (Amsterdam), LACE (LA), Roulette (NYC), Goethe-Institut (Boston), Issue Project Room (Brooklyn), Menza Pri Koritu (Ljubljana), Uganda (Jerusalem), Sound of Mu (Oslo), and Electronic Church (Berlin).

His sound works have been published by MORE Records, YDLMIER, Lacryphagy, Interval, Radical Matters, Dragon’s Eye, IYNGES, and the Estuary Ltd. imprint, which he runs with his partner Laura Cetilia. He lives and works in Providence, RI, where he teaches at the Rhode Island School of Design and Brown University.

Nick Sadler, Technical Assistant III
Nick Sadler is an artist, multi-instrumentalist composer, and performer whose genre-agnostic career spans over 20 years and 24 countries in spaces ranging from basements to arenas and prominent music festivals. With a discography of 35 releases, over 40 licenses and scores for film, television, video games, and web content, Nick’s work received worldwide critical and listener acclaim, gaining’s coveted “Best New Music” accolade and a rare 10/10 from preeminent music journalist The Needle Drop. His album You Won’t Get What You Want is considered by many to be a modern classic and is positioned fourth in The NeedleDrop’s “Top 200 Albums of the 2010s.” Nick’s inventive, cross disciplinary, recorded compositions have been featured in most well-known music publications including Rolling Stone, Spin Magazine, StereoGum, and Brooklyn Vegan, as well as innumerable underground music publications going back to the 90s. Sadler has been a founding member of the shapeshifting and darkly expansive group Daughters for 21 years and was a member of Rhyse Chattham’s 200 guitar orchestra, featured on the album A Crimson Grail for 200 Guitars. In 2019, Sadler co-designed a signature guitar pedal called The Empty Glass and is currently co-designing his first signature guitar model, The Sadmaster.
Bonnie Jones, Visiting Researcher
Bonnie Jones is a Korean-American improvising musician, poet, and performer working with electronic sound and text. She performs solo and in numerous collaborative music, film, and visual art projects. Bonnie was a founding member of the Transmodern Festival and CHELA Gallery and is currently a member of the High Zero Festival collective. In 2010, along with Suzanne Thorpe she co-founded TECHNE,, an organization that develops anti-racist, feminist workshops that center on technology-focused art making, improvisation, and community collaboration. She has received commissions from the London ICA and Walters Art Museum and has presented her work extensively at institutions in the US, Mexico, Europe and Asia. Bonnie was a 2018 recipient of the Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants to Artists Award. Born in South Korea she was raised on a dairy farm in New Jersey, and currently resides in Baltimore, Maryland and Providence RI on the lands of the Susquehannock, Piscataway, Algonquian, and Narragansett.

Will Johnson, Visiting Researcher
Will Johnson is a multimedia artist and composer from New York City. Themes from past work include black digital memory, phantom archives and the coded poetics of audio engineer-speak. He is the recipient of the Fellowship for Sound Art/Composition from the Jerome Foundation and the McKnight Foundation’s Fellowship for Musicians. His commercial work includes sound design and composition for Acura, GAP, Beats Electronics, HBO and vocal contributions for Grammy-winning best electronic album Skin. Live performances by Johnson have been commissioned by Lincoln Center, the Kitchen, 92Y and Mass MoCA. Recent collaborative work includes Eternal September (with composer Bill Britelle) and an ongoing work with performer Okwui Okpokwasili that began during her 2022 artist-in-residence at MoMA. His multichannel audio and sound installation work has been featured in artist Hebru Brantley’s Nevermore Park and as part of the University of Johannesburg’s 2022 Black Sonic exhibition. Johnson is a doctoral candidate at Brown University in the Music and Multimedia Composition program.

Nontokozo F. Sihwa, Visiting Researcher
Nontokozo F. Sihwa is a composer, sound designer and interdisciplinary artist. She has contributed sounds and music to a range of projects including releases on AD93, NON Worldwide and Optimo Music, installations for Hyperdub and the Institute of Contemporary Arts; and scores for Channel 4 and the National Theatre of Scotland. In 2021, she won the PRS Foundation Oram Award for innovation in music and sound technologies. Trained as a mathematician, she brings both a boundless curiosity and exacting precision to her work: she developed a “pirate AI” opera as a Fellow of CTM Festival in Berlin, and led a workshop on radio transmitter building at Moogfest in North Carolina. Nontokozo draws on her interest in Italian futurism, posthumanism, and the phenomenology of radio communication. These inspire her otherworldly and distinctive music. She has performed at numerous festivals and events across Europe and North America. She has also lectured and given workshops at universities and cultural institutions including Berklee College of Music, Slade School of Fine Art, Moogfest, Somerset House Studios, Tate Britain and the V&A Museum. She studied mathematics at McGill University and the University of Glasgow, where she was a prize-winning student. Clients for syncs and commissioned work include Burberry, Star Alliance and the Royal Docks. She was featured in the FACT Magazine and British Council Documentary, Sonic Futures.

Femi Shonuga-Fleming, Research Assistant
Ifemiwale Shonuga-Fleming works with modular synthesizers, DIY electronics and various coding languages to discuss the organic within electronics and technology through sound art and composition. His work explores the intersections of sound and space though spatial audio and architectural design as an experimental practice. He’s most interested in generative systems, chance and synthesized organic textures within sonic soundscapes. Femi is currently studying architecture and creative computation at RISD.

Wenran Zhao, Teaching Assistant
¡wénrán zhào! is an interdisciplinary artist, programmer, weaver, who is pursuing her MFA at Rhode Island School of Design. Her work explores the textures of technology by repurposing old instruments/devices with custom software. Aiming to break the dichotomy of "high" and "low" tech, she seeks to create interactive interfaces that incorporate intimate sensory experiences. She is interested in Noise, Word, and Heat.

Ada Wu, Teaching Assistant
Ada Yueting Wu is an interdisciplinary artist working in sound, installation, and performance. She creates happenings that interrogate the production of silence and truth within systems of control. Her practice arises from her family’s silence on generation trauma, the unseen workers that constructed her home city, and the control of language and movements throughout her childhood. Her practice critiques systems of control through negotiating authoritative truth with counter narratives, and unearthing conflicts and contradictions. In the past, Wu’s research investigated the history of totalitarian architectures and their manipulation of body movements. Her current research examines noise and sonic weapons through interactive systems, spatial audio and live performances. Wu completed her BFA sculpture at RISD and is currently pursuing her MFA in Digital + Media.